Distraught family of DSK accuser look to God

Tue May 24, 2011 1:44pm GMT

By Saliou Samb

LABE REGION, Guinea (Reuters) - In a living room bare but for a few family photos and Islamic texts, the African man who says he is the brother of Dominique Strauss-Kahn's accuser says he has not slept or eaten properly for days.

"I heard the news on the radio and honestly I do not know what happened. I want to speak to my sister," the man, called Mamoudou, told Reuters at a village in the Labe region of Guinea, a hard day's drive north of the capital Conakry.

Mamoudou, whose family name and home village are withheld to protect the identity of the alleged assault victim, said he had not heard from his younger sister for several years. But he had no doubt that she was the 32-year-old Guinean widow who filed the complaint in New York. Her name has appeared in local media.

In the community of devout Muslims, religion provides solace for those with troubles far away, and for poverty at home.

A hamlet of 20 dwellings lost in the rural depths of this impoverished West African country, Mamoudou's village is a world away from the luxury suite of the Times Square Sofitel where the now former chief of the International Monetary Fund and French presidential contender is accused of trying to rape the maid.

There is no electricity or mains water and the village is accessible only on foot through dense forest. A few scattered agricultural tools and cows point to the subsistence farming that allows the residents of the hamlet to eke out a living.

"In our family, we are above material things," said Mamoudou, who is aged about 50.

"Even if you are a billionaire, we don't care. The most important thing for us is how you follow God's path."   Continued...

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